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Body composition, energy expenditure and physical activity

The effect of milk proteins on appetite regulation and diet-induced thermogenesis




There is increasing evidence to support that a high-protein diet may promote weight loss and prevent weight (re)gain better than a low-protein diet, and that the effect is due to higher diet-induced thermogenesis (DIT) and increased satiety. However, data on the effect of different types of protein are limited. In the present study we compare the effect of whey, casein and milk on DIT and satiety.


Seventeen slightly overweight (29±4 kg/m2) male subjects completed the study. The study had a randomized, crossover design, where the effect on 4 h postprandial energy expenditure (EE), substrate oxidation and subjective appetite sensation of three isocaloric test meals containing either a whey drink, a casein drink or skim milk was examined. Energy intake (EI) at a subsequent ad libitum lunch was also measured.


There was no significant effect on subjective appetite sensation, but EI at lunch was lower after the milk test meal than after the casein (9%; P=0.0260) and the whey (9%; P=0.0258) test meals. Postprandial lipid oxidation was significantly higher after the casein test meal compared with the whey test meal (P=0.0147) when adjusted for baseline values. There was no significant difference in effect on EE, protein oxidation or carbohydrate oxidation.


Milk reduced subsequent EI more than isocaloric drinks containing only whey or casein. A small but significant increase in lipid oxidation was seen after casein compared with whey.

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We are grateful to the laboratory and kitchen staff at the department for their assistance, especially Søren Andresen, Jane Jørgensen, Charlotte Kostecki and Yvonne Rasmussen, and to Tina Cuthbertson for proof reading the manuscript. JK Lorenzen, C Hoppe and A Astrup designed the study. R Frederiksen, R Hvid and JK Lorenzen were responsible for collection of data and data analysis. All authors participated in the discussion of the results and preparation of the manuscript. The study was financed by Arla Foods Amba Viby, Denmark and the Danish Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries, Copenhagen, Denmark.

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Correspondence to J Lorenzen.

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A Astrup is a member of Global Dairy Platform, Chicago and received an honorarium for each board meeting.

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Lorenzen, J., Frederiksen, R., Hoppe, C. et al. The effect of milk proteins on appetite regulation and diet-induced thermogenesis. Eur J Clin Nutr 66, 622–627 (2012).

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  • milk protein
  • casein
  • whey
  • appetite
  • diet-induced thermogenesis

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